Library Journal Review
This latest collaboration between celebrity chef Bastianich and daughter Tanya takes a festive approach to Italian cooking, offering recipes (e.g., prosecco punch, grilled calamari salad with tomato coulis, pear and pecorino ravioli, almond torte with chocolate chips) and tips for effortless entertaining. Appetizers, sides, mains, desserts, and other dishes are portioned on the larger side, often serving eight guests or more. The authors pass on plenty of party planning know-how, suggesting dishes and presentation strategies for occasions such as self-serve cocktail parties, New Year's celebrations, engagements, weddings, and birthdays. VERDICT These inviting recipes will easily set the table for a stylish gathering. © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Publishers Weekly Review
The latest from powerhouse Bastianich (Lidia's Mastering the Art of Italian Cuisine), written with daughter Manuali, highlights an issue that plagues authors of Italian cookbooks: with so many restaurants and cookbooks and television shows focusing on Italian food, how does an author come up with anything new? The answer in this pleasant, albeit unremarkable, book is to approach Italian food with an eye to entertaining. Recipes are as solid as one might expect from the owner of restaurants in three cities, co-owner of Eataly, and host of a PBS show. Bastianich and Manuali make a game effort as they include a recipe for fresh tomato sauce in their instructions for chicken parmigiana and fill ravioli with Bartlett pears and cheese, a favorite at her New York City restaurant Felidia. A polenta layer cake with Gorgonzola cheese is clever, and sprinkling fried eggs on a bed of pancetta and apples with fennel powder is a nice touch. Fans will find several of her familiar recipes here-such as spaghetti with Bolognese sauce, and stuffed mushrooms-but expanded in order to serve larger parties. While mother and daughter sprinkle these pages with somewhat generic suggestions for events ranging from formal wedding dinners to a kids' pizza parties, there isn't much to distinguish this from dozens of other books-including the previous 11 written by Bastianich. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Booklist Review
*Starred Review* Not content merely to dominate the American realm of fine Italian dining through her many restaurants and her burgeoning Eataly retail/restaurant chain, Bastianich, with her fertile culinary imagination, continues turning out cookbooks that appeal to the home cook with approachable, yet tradition-respecting, recipes. This latest effort encourages cooks to serve up repasts both for special-occasion home dining and for potluck feasts and buffets where dozens of hungry mouths must be fed. Pizza rolls turn elegant with stuffings of sausage and rapini or ricotta and leeks. Baked pastas are always a hit on a buffet table. Plenty of seafood and vegetarian alternatives satisfy diners eschewing meat. As usual, Bastianich never forgets her own far-northeast-Italian roots as she presents wonderful ideas featuring cabbage, such as a polenta cake layered with gorgonzola cheese and cabbage or an Italian version of cabbage rolls stuffed with salmon. Expect high demand from Lidia's many fans.--Knoblauch, Mark Copyright 2017 Booklist